Taking a walk after a meal burns calories, but more importantly, stimulates and improves your digestion.
Dinner tonight in Milwaukee was a 10 ounce New York Strip steak covered in blue cheese, grilled beets and carrots with an evening stroll on the side. Hand in hand with my date (my laptop and work bag), I set out into the empty streets. My stomach was grateful that I didn’t hop in a cab back to the hotel, instead. From the New York Times:
Over the years, researchers have found that a post-meal walk, as short as 15 minutes, can in fact help with digestion and improve blood sugar levels.
Improving blood sugar levels and reducing insulin peaks means your body is storing less of that meal you just ate as fat. This isn’t simply a matter of trimming down your belly, however. We spend so much time focused on aesthetics and building muscle that the idea of improving one’s digestion seems somehow less important than burning calories. Before we can optimize for a more attractive physique, we must move in the direction of good overall health. From newfrontiersmarket.com:
Since 70% of the body’s immune system dwells in the digestive tract, maintaining digestive health is crucial to the body’s overall well-being.
In order for us to even begin a workout program, we need our immune system firing on all cylinders. Any effective training program is based on the premise of consistency. If we don’t feel well, we are less likely to train regularly. Instead of making positive health choices, will inevitably reach for foods that we mistakenly believe will help us feel more alert, like sugar and caffeine.
Walking after a meal can improve symptoms of acid reflux or GERD and constipation, as well as moving the food through your system more quickly.
Taking small steps (see what I did there?) to work towards better digestion thorough a relatively simple habit like taking a walk is good business. As a bonus for making a healthy decision, you’ll burn some calories en route to your six-pack.
It’s summer. Take off your shoes and make it a stroll on the beach.